August 19, 2010

Juliet Marillier: The Well of Shades

This is the final book in the Bridei Chronicles. I was really excited when I learned that it strongly focuses on the Gaelic spy Faolan once more, continuing his story from where Blade of Fortriu left off. This book left me without any disappointments and was a welcome ending to the series. As with the last book, it still keeps in touch with main characters from earlier in the series and shares their point of views.

Someone is needed to go north and explore to see how people are living on the land in a region once reigned by those outside of Fortriu. Who better to send than Faolan, native those lands, a spymaster, and, when he has to be, a killer? He is ready and eager for the mission with a couple of personal missions of his own to complete before he returns. On one mission he meets Eile, a young woman with an unfortunate and terrible story. Another mission takes him back to his past to his family whom he deemed would never forgive nor love him for a terrible deed forced upon him long ago. The third mission is business. With each step for these missions Faolan is changed. Life holds much in store for him and Fortriu.

As I mentioned with Blade of Fortrui, I had not been happy with how it ended. This book went above and beyond, completely making up for it and more. I debate now which book in the Bridei Chronicles is my favorite. It would have to be The Dark Mirror or The Well of Shades, though they were all good. I may safely say that this is the book in the series which has touched me most. If I never reread the series as a whole, which I very much doubt, I would at least reread this book.